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Old 07-04-2010, 08:26 PM   #31
rkelsen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
Then go complain that Slackware should have automatic dependency resolution and they will say, "No, that's not how we do things around here
Damn straight. You want dependancy resolution, you can choose another distro. You have the power to choose.

That said, of course there's absolutely nothing stopping you from adding whatever you want to Slackware - dependancy checking included. Again, you have the power to choose.

People's opinions, no matter how strong, cannot affect the amount of choice you have under Linux. Open your eyes man.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
But it's just for your protection.
Yes. Just like the barriers that stop people from driving off cliffs.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
Oh, shit. You said "Period!" Now we can't discuss anymore!
No need to get personal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
My turn
$ sudo make me a sandwich
sudo: lucmove is not in the sudoers file

Last edited by rkelsen; 07-04-2010 at 11:46 PM.
 
Old 07-04-2010, 08:28 PM   #32
saikee
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unSpawn,

Before Ubuntu came to the scene we had both root and normal accounts in every Linux and both can log onto the GUI. While many big Linux are gradually moving to phasing out the root log in to the GUI the Slax and Slackware families remain their position and I was rather surprised that recently I could install a Slackware 13 without specifying a normal user account whereas with the newer Ubuntu it even stops people fiddling with the gdm.conf to get a root log in to the GUI.

I don't think I am promoting the use of root log in to the GUI but merely pointing out that the users can choose whatever they wish for.

Newer users from MS Windows are accustomed to GUI and generally find it hard to cope with the file ownership and root privilege. As experience picks up many of them would appreciate the distro's intention.

I think many Live CD like Puppy and Slax, both now have their own families of distros, are pretty safe to work as root in GUI because there are Live CD with read-only system files. After log out nothing is saved. These Live CD give users a direct access to the GUI as root. Thus this has its own usage and should not be compared with experience from those managing servers.

I have never thought of promoting root usage apart from pointing out what is being offered from various distros. I do find from time to time necessary to work in root as I am heavily into booting and partitioning. I am not sure how much of our ignorance of partitioning and booting can be attributed to the lack of root privilege. To me I could not possibly understand my hard disk unless I could see my partitions by command
Code:
fdsik -l
which is not acted on unless I am in root.

It would be fair to say that I do like a root terminal because it gives me the full access of what Linux can do but I always discourage root in GUI especially when the system is networked to the Internet.

Ubuntu does not in a normal installation provide a root account and so it is very difficult to have its system files corrupted by the Internet attackers who do not own the system files. Most other distros still create both the root and normal user account in the installation.

Last edited by saikee; 07-04-2010 at 08:30 PM.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 07:22 AM   #33
LaneLester
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On Mon, Jul 5, 2010 at 12:05 AM, LinuxQuestions.org <forum@linuxquestions.org> wrote:
Quote:
with the newer Ubuntu it even stops people fiddling with the gdm.conf to get a root log in to the GUI.
It's a minor hobby of mine to install multiple distros on the several partitions of my "operating system" drive. I limit myself to Debian-types, because I like the repository system.

My impression is that, with Ubuntu Maverick Meerkat, it has become easier to run as root. With Maverick, all you have to do is "sudo passwd root" and root logon is enabled.

My current favorite flavor of Ubuntu is the 64-bit Minimal CD

After it's installed I run this script to add just the additional programs I want:
Code:
#!/bin/sh
# To install Minimal CD, at the "boot:" prompt enter "cli" to start command line install.
# After the base system is installed, set root pw, log in and use nano to uncomment repositories.
# Execute this script.
# Install nvidia-current after reboot.
# Copy over working xorg.conf (/mnt/arc/ZipLinux/MinimalCD/).
apt-get update
apt-get install xorg xterm gdm openbox tint2 conky menu filezilla firefox thunderbird checkgmail emelfm2 bluefish leafpad evince alarm-clock galculator gnucash geeqie feh gimp alsa-base alsaplayer-text alsa-utils alsamixergui cups foomatic-db foomatic-db-gutenprint samba4 zip unzip xfburn synaptic --no-install-recommends
service gdm start
It would be off-topic, but interesting to see if there's a correlation between the attitudes about root and political viewpoints. I'm a libertarian and support making known both the dangers and procedures for running as root. I suspect those who believe people should be protected from root through control and ignorance are also supporters of the current UK and USA governments which seek to control every aspect of their citizens' lives.

Lane

Last edited by LaneLester; 07-05-2010 at 07:24 AM.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 08:02 AM   #34
rkelsen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaneLester View Post
It would be off-topic, but interesting to see if there's a correlation between the attitudes about root and political viewpoints.
NO! For several reasons:

Firstly, it takes an open mind to use Linux in the first place.

Secondly, this isn't about removing control from the hands of the user. It's about stability and system security. Do you leave your house unlocked, and keep your car keys in your your car's ignition switch?

The security model employed by Linux separates the system from the user. The system is treated as the mission-critical component. It cannot be allowed to fail by any means. Keeping user processes out of system space means that system processes will not falter when user processes decide to fail somehow. You're circumventing that by running as root. Not to mention unlocking all of the doors. But hey, it's your computer. Your choice.

My third point is that you shouldn't "need" to use the root account for everything. You can just as easily install most things into your user account. If something doesn't work, it's because you're not doing it right.
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaneLester View Post
My impression is that, with Ubuntu Maverick Meerkat, it has become easier to run as root. With Maverick, all you have to do is "sudo passwd root" and root logon is enabled.
FWIW - That command has worked on every version of Ubuntu since they first disabled the root account by default.

Last edited by rkelsen; 07-05-2010 at 08:09 AM.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 08:11 AM   #35
MTK358
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And remember that when Unix was made, computers weren't personal. They were big machines where several people were logged on them at the same time by various means. Permissions were very important to keep the users from damaging each others' data.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 08:12 AM   #36
saikee
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LaneLester,

Did you manage run Ubuntu GUI as root?

Every experienced Linux user would know a Linux Live CD is all one needs to alter/create the root password of most installed Linux. I have in the past always install my own root account with Ubuntu because it is standard in every Linux to have root for accessing and working with the system files. No Linux user can multi-boot several operating systems without a basic knowledge working with the system files. If one doesn't work with the system files one never learns Linux fully.

I suppose people who run servers would not like normal users infringing the area controlled by the root whereas a desktop user running his/her own machine would want access of every part of the installed Linux. How one protects the integrity of the system depends how careful one prepares to do. If one isn't confident then staying away from root is a sensible move.

This word "choices" has created some heated arguments here but that is what the various distros are doing. If some developers want a quicker movement with the new technology they leave an existing projects and develope new distros of their own. One can stay with CentOS that still uses a 2.6.18 kernel when the majority are switching to 2.6.3x kernal. I haven't installed a DSL recently but I do find running a 2.4 kernel and using V0.91 Grub rathering refreshing and have great respect these developers could make so much out of dated technology on such a small footprint.

There cannot be more extreme in installing a member from the Ubuntu family and found no password asked for the root user and yet installing a member of Slackware family, say Absolute, the only user on completion of a full installation is the root itself. The majority of Linux distros are in middle ground and offers both root and normal users in an installation. Some don't do anything if the root logs in to the GUI while others like Suse, Fedora and Mepis etc show a waring. Since most Linux is free so a user can select what is most suitable for him/her.

rkelsen,

I do appreciate people mananging mission-critical servers taking a strong view on how best to protect the system but there is also a sizeable population operating Linux on their own machines as the sole user. Thus their views regarding to root usage can be different.

You do know without accessing the root privilege a user cannot repair the boot loader or even see the partitioning scheme of a hard disk. Thus not using root prilvige these desktop users will have to take their machines to the Linux specialists for repair every time. I doubt if that is the intention of most Linux developers.

Last edited by saikee; 07-05-2010 at 08:29 AM.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 08:20 AM   #37
MTK358
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I would say that Linux is all about choices. Not because it was intended that way, but as a by-product of Linux's openness and modulatity the open-source philosophy. Since everyone can create their own software, even freely take parts of others' software, and Linux is so easy to hack, everyone makes their own version of what they think that piece of software should be.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 09:05 AM   #38
rkelsen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saikee View Post
I do appreciate people mananging mission-critical servers taking a strong view on how best to protect the system but there is also a sizeable population operating Linux on their own machines as the sole user.
Yes I know. I'm one of them.

Why should I risk deleting an important system file just because I want to compile a new kernel?[1]
Quote:
Originally Posted by saikee View Post
You do know without accessing the root privilege a user cannot repair the boot loader or even see the partitioning scheme of a hard disk.
Of course. Hence my choice of the phrase "most things." This is why we have sudo. It allows you to escalate your own privileges only long enough to execute whatever administrative command you need to issue without requiring that you log into the administrator's account.

You don't need administrative access to do such things as web browsing, playing games or checking email.

[1] A long, long time ago, there was a bug in a particular version of the kernel source which caused the deletion of some system files if it was compiled as root. It was only a matter of hours before this was patched, but it makes my point perfectly.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 04:45 PM   #39
lucmove
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaneLester View Post
It would be off-topic, but interesting to see if there's a correlation between the attitudes about root and political viewpoints. I'm a libertarian and support making known both the dangers and procedures for running as root. I suspect those who believe people should be protected from root through control and ignorance are also supporters of the current UK and USA governments which seek to control every aspect of their citizens' lives.
Exactly. "Think of the children..."


Quote:
Originally Posted by rkelsen View Post
Firstly, it takes an open mind to use Linux in the first place.
Wrong! Many Linux activisits, erm, I mean, users are extremely intolerant of divergent points of view. Access to root. Vi x Emacs. KDE x Gnome. GNU x BSD. Briefs x boxers. Frequent x Occasional personal hygiene. Do you really think that R. M. Stallman has an open mind? Hell, no! It's his way or the high way. Many Linux users are extremely stubborn.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rkelsen View Post
Secondly, this isn't about removing control from the hands of the user. It's about stability and system security. Do you leave your house unlocked, and keep your car keys in your your car's ignition switch?
You suck at analogies. If a person wants to leave their house unlocked, THEY CAN! And it is not difficult. It is not hindered. They just can. No one is there hiding their keys from them saying "No, sir, you can't take care of your own keys so you can't have them. It's for your own good."


Quote:
Originally Posted by rkelsen View Post
But hey, it's your computer. Your choice.
Whoa! Do you actually believe in those words you said?!!! Because that's exactly what I'm saying! MY computer. I get to do whatever I want with it. I will gladly trash my system beyond any chance of recovery with one fell swoop of a dreadful, humankind-threatening root command if I damn well please! THAT is choice.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rkelsen View Post
My third point is that you shouldn't "need" to use the root account for everything.
Are you American? That's a problem I sometimes have with Americans, they mix "need" and "want" too often. As in, for example, "I am going away, I don't need this crap." When they actually mean "I don't WANT this crap."

Choice is not about needing, it's about wanting. I NEED to get dressed, but then I CHOOSE to wear a sweater or a shirt. Whichever I WANT.

EDUCATION IS GOOD. IMPOSITION IS BAD. VERY BAD.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 06:18 PM   #40
Tinkster
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
You suck at analogies. If a person wants to leave their house unlocked, THEY CAN! And it is not difficult. It is not hindered. They just can. No one is there hiding their keys from them saying "No, sir, you can't take care of your own keys so you can't have them. It's for your own good."
What about your analogy? Might consider the freedom of
using a car w/o proper breaks on a public road ... quite
a different story all of a sudden. Unless one lives in
Brazil ;D


Cheers,
Tink
 
Old 07-05-2010, 06:32 PM   #41
damgar
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It's illegal to the leave the keys in your car in Texas. It makes you a public burden when your car is stolen.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 07:14 PM   #42
lucmove
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinkster View Post
What about your analogy? Might consider the freedom of using a car w/o proper breaks on a public road ... quite a different story all of a sudden. Unless one lives in Brazil ;D
You suck at analogies too. My use of my computer affects no one but me. Completely different from a car sharing a road with other cars.

No, don't bring in the misguided idea that using Linux as root will make the machine become a zombie and send spam. You don't need root access for that.

Ooh, I mentioned something peculiar about Americans, so you mentioned Brazil. I see what you did there! (winky wink, shooting hand pistols)
 
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Old 07-05-2010, 07:48 PM   #43
rkelsen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
Wrong! Many Linux activisits, erm, I mean, users are extremely intolerant of divergent points of view.
Do you really let people's opinions decide what you're doing?

http://xkcd.com/386/
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
Many Linux users are extremely stubborn.
Stubborn about maintaining my freedom?

More power to them!
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
You suck at analogies. If a person wants to leave their house unlocked, THEY CAN! And it is not difficult. It is not hindered. They just can.
Yes. In the same way you can run as root if you wish, unless the machine you're on doesn't belong to you. No distro actively prevents you from running as root. Ubuntu might have the account disabled by default, but enabling it is a trivial operation as discussed above. As far as I'm aware, no other distro does this.

Were you around for the Linspire discussions?

Here's a relevant quote from an excellent article about it:

"A piece of malware that a user starts with ordinary-user authority will be significantly handicapped in what tools it can apply to the user's system, for starters: Quite a lot of system utilities capable of doing havoc to the user's system and to other, remote systems cannot be run at all, or cannot be run to any effect, unless run as a privileged user. The attitude you urge gives them the keys to the kingdom.

Moreover, it gives it the means to bulldoze that kingdom. The user's data, while vital, are the furniture, clothing, and pantry supplies with which the kingdom has been supplied. Much as it's terrible to arrive home and find all of one's belongings stolen and the family home empty, it's even worse to find only a bare spot on the ground where the house used to be."

Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
Whoa! Do you actually believe in those words you said?!!!
Of course I do.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
I will gladly trash my system beyond any chance of recovery with one fell swoop of a dreadful, humankind-threatening root command if I damn well please!
That's a very Windows98-style, single-user, single-task viewpoint.

Back in the day, (once I had become comfortable enough with Linux), I made Windows 98 eat itself. Now that was Fun - with a capital "F". Windows xp doesn't even give the Administrator this level of access. There are many files and directories in Windows xp which cannot be deleted, moved or renamed regardless of access levels. The same can't be said for Linux. With administrator access, you can delete whatever file you choose. Even device nodes.

I've noticed that Microsoft are taking the 'gently, gently' approach to boiling frogs. It is highly likely that future versions of Windows won't even have an administrator account.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucmove View Post
EDUCATION IS GOOD. IMPOSITION IS BAD. VERY BAD.
Correct. Who is imposing on you?

Why are you so angry? Nothing is stopping you from doing as you please in Linux.

Last edited by rkelsen; 07-05-2010 at 09:00 PM.
 
Old 07-05-2010, 08:40 PM   #44
frankbell
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Back on topic, just the other day, I saw someone do something in Ubuntu I hadn't seen before. Logged in as user, he entered:

Code:
sudo su
After he entered his sudo password, he remained su until he was done doing root stuff, then he exited out su. (He was demonstrating something at my LUG meeting.)
 
Old 07-05-2010, 10:02 PM   #45
damgar
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When I had Ubuntu, before I just activated the root user account "sudo su" was how I did things. I ran into a few issues at times thought that apparently weren't allowed by sudo. I don't remember what they were, but I found it odd.
 
  


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